On June 30, 2008, Ontario established a new system to challenge discrimination. There are three parts to this human rights enforcement system:
If you believe you have experienced discrimination, you can file an application directly with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario. To request forms or receive more information, contact the Tribunal:
Toll Free: 1-866-598-0322
A publicly funded Human Rights Legal Support Centre has been set up to provide free legal assistance to individuals who wish to file an application with the Tribunal. For free assistance and advice, contact the Centre:
Toll Free: 1-866-625-5179
The Ontario Human Rights Commission will promote human rights through research, public education and general human rights advocacy. Contact:
Toll Free: 1-800-387-9080
Stage 1: Submitting an Application
- You can submit an application up to one year after you experienced discrimination.
- You can also ask an organization to submit an application on your behalf.
- Your application should describe your experience in your own words.
- Your application should include evidence of the discrimination (such as possible witnesses).
Stage 2: The Response
- The person who you feel discriminated against you will be able to respond in their own words.
Stage 3: Mediation
- The Tribunal will help you work out a solution to the discrimination.
- It will offer you the option of mediation, where you can try to work out an agreement with the landlord.
- Most cases are resolved through mediation.
Stage 4: Your Hearing
If you have a hearing and the Tribunal decides that your rights have been violated, you could get:
- Money that compensates you for experiencing discrimination.
- An order from the Tribunal that protects your rights.
- An order from the Tribunal that makes sure the person who discriminated will not break the law in the future.
The Tribunal is also responsible for enforcing all orders. This means that if the person who discriminated against you refuses to follow the Tribunal’s order, you can immediately ask the Tribunal to take action.
How Long Does the Process Take?
It should take less than a year for the Tribunal to decide your case. However, you may be able to resolve it faster through mediation.
Webinar: Challenging Discrimination in Housing
This is a recording of a webinar presented on October 31, 2011. To view the webinar in Quicktime/MP4 format, click here.